Ravi Shankar  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Ravi Shankar (born Robindro Shaunkor Chowdhury, 7 April 1920 - 11 December 2012), often referred to by the title Pandit, was an Indian musician and composer who played the plucked string instrument sitar. He has been described as the best known contemporary Indian musician.

Shankar was born in Varanasi and spent his youth touring Europe and India with the dance group of his brother Uday Shankar. He gave up dancing in 1938 to study sitar playing under court musician Allauddin Khan. After finishing his studies in 1944, Shankar worked as a composer, creating the music for the Apu Trilogy by Satyajit Ray, and was music director of All India Radio, New Delhi, from 1949 to 1956.

In 1956, he began to tour Europe and America playing Indian classical music and increased its popularity there in the 1960s through teaching, performance, and his association with violinist Yehudi Menuhin and rock artist George Harrison of The Beatles. Shankar engaged Western music by writing concerti for sitar and orchestra and toured the world in the 1970s and 1980s. From 1986 to 1992 he served as a nominated member of the upper chamber of the Parliament of India. Shankar was awarded India's highest civilian honour, the Bharat Ratna, in 1999, and received three Grammy Awards. He continued to perform in the 2000s, sometimes with his daughter Anoushka.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Ravi Shankar" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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